Rainwater Harvesting Resources
1. Presentations (pdf)
- Big Blue Bucket presentation from SFPUC on rainwater harvesting and low-impact design in San Francisco.
- Rainwater Harvesting Training Presentation by the Texas Water Development Board,
- This artistic “rainwater collecting tree”, created by Christina Bertea, transforms into a clothes line. Read more and see the video here.
- Brad Lancaster lists rainwater videos here.
Click on albums to view all rainwater harvesting images: rainwater tank images, rain barrel images, rain garden images
4. Brochures and Handouts
- Trifold brochure about rainwater harvesting by ARCSA.
- Rainwater Harvesting by Practical Action. 12 page handout on rainwater harvesting with an international focus.
- Basins Of Relations: A Citizen’s Guide to Protecting and Restoring Our Watersheds (2008) by the WATER Institute.
- Water Harvesting Curb Cut Detail from city of Tucson. Schematic showing how to construct a curb-cut to harvest street water runoff.
- Fighting water with water: Behavioral change versus climate change. Article by Valerie Strassberg and Brad Lancaster. June, 2011, Journal AWWA.
- Effect of Roof Material on Water Quality for Rainwater Harvesting Systems. Mendez, Carolina, et. al. Texas Water Development Board, 2010
- Quantifying the First-Flush Phenomenon: Effects of First-Flush on Water Yield and Quality. By D. B. Martinson* and T.H. Thomas**
- The microbiological quality of roof-collected rainwater of private dwellings in New Zealand By S. Abbott , B. Caughley & J. Douwes.
- Key Messages from a Decade of Water Quality Research into Roof Collected Rainwater Supplies. By Peter J Coombes, et. al. 2006.
- Evaluation of Turf-Grass and Prairie-Vegetated Rain Gardens in a Clay and Sand Soil, Madison, Wisconsin, Water Years 2004–08. Scientific Investigations Report 2010–5077. USGS. Prepared in cooperation with the City of Madison and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
- Agricultural Water Stewardship Case Study: Bodega Valley Rainwater Catchment & Alternative Water Supply Program in Ag Innovations Network, Dec. 2013. Rainwater storage returns summer stream flow for salmon survival.
- Roof water collection and irrigation
- Roof Water Harvesting for a Low-Impact Water Supply. By Brock Dolman and Kate Lundquist. The document includes construction details for a simple catchment system with Brazilian first flush diverter. The systems provide drinking water for small cabins.
- Rainwater Harvesting: System Planning (manual). By Justin Mechell et. al. with Texas AgriLife Extension Service, 2010. This is a 300 page technical document with information on how to design and build a roof water catchment system.
- Texas Manual on Rainwater Harvesting, 3rd ed., by Wendy Price Todd and Gail Vittori. Texas Water Development Board in Cooperation with the Center for Maximum Potential Building Systems, 2005. Good overview of rainwater harvesting systems and components.
- Water Storage Guide: Storing water to benefit streamflows and fish in North Coast creeks and rivers. Produced by Sanctuary Forest May 2008
- Drip Irrigation Kit Installation Manual: Gravity Feed Drip Irrigation Kit for Vegetable Garden. By Irrigation Direct, 2010. This manual shows you how to design and build a gravity fed irrigation system.
- Rain gardens
- Rain Garden Handbook for Western Washington A Guide for Design, Maintenance, and Installation. June, 2013.
- How to Build a Rain Garden: On-line, step-by-step instruction from Ask This Old House.
- Cold Climates Resources
- Alberta Guidelines for Residential Rainwater Harvesting Systems.Alberta Municipal Affairs, 2010.
- Guidelines for Residential Rainwater Harvesting Systems Handbook. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, 2012
- Water Cistern Construction for Small Houses. Alaska Building Research Series HCM-01557. University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service, 2011
- Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond, Volumes 1 and 2 (2nd and 3rd reprints). By Brad Lancaster, Rainsource Press, 2013. Must read books by world-wide rainwater harvesting expert Brad Lancaster.
- Water Storage: Tanks, Cisterns, Aquifers, and Ponds for Domestic Supply, Fire, and Emergency Use. By Art Ludwig, Oasis Design, 2013. Info on tanks design details for rainwater harvesting, making ferrocement tanks, storage in in the root zone, and pond storage.
- Rainwater Collection for the Mechanically Challenged, 2nd ed. Banks, Suzy, and Richard Heinichen, Tank Town Publishing, 2004. Good info on whole house rainwater systems.
- Water from the Sky. Earthship Biotecture. By Michael Reynolds, 2005. Book about Earthships, with details on their greywater and rainwater harvesting systems.
- Rainwater Catchment Systems for Domestic Supply: Design, Construction, and Implementation. By John Gould and Erik Nissen-Petersen. Practical Action Publishing, 1999.An excellent review of rainwater harvesting practices around the world.
- Creating Rain Gardens: Capturing the Rain for Your Own Water-Efficient Garden. By Cleo Woelfle-Erksine and Apryl Uncapher. Timber Press, 2012. Excellent book for anyone wanting to build a rain garden.
7. Suppliers and Educational Organizations
- On-line vendors of rainwater components
- Blue Barrel Systems Sells kits for converting closed-top barrels with resources for local suppliers of barrel.
- Rain Harvest Systems Sells all types of rainwater components including first-flush diverter kits, leaf eater downspout screens, pumps, and tanks. They also offer great technical support.
- Aqua Barrel Sells kits for closed- and open-top barrels, and IBC tote rainwater tanks
- Educational websites
- Harvesting Rainwater for Drylands and Beyond. Brad Lancaster’s website full of information on rainwater harvesting.
- Harvest H20– educational website with resources about system design, codes, incentives, and products.
- This is a great website documenting Ole Ersson’s permitted potable rainwater harvesting system in Portland, Oregon. Includes diagram of the system and components used. The system cost $1,500 and harvests 27,000 gallons per year.
- Oasis Design’s Water Information Central has info on natural water purification, rainwater harvesting, and water storage.
- Classes and trainings
- Watershed Management Group. (Tucson and Phoenix, Arizona). Offers classes, a “water harvesting coop”and more.
- American Rainwater Catchment Systems Association (ARCSA). Offers trainings and accreditation for rainwater installers. They also have a comprehensive list of rainwater resources here.